• Our hope-filled future is bound up in sharing the story of Jesus, in discipling others, in bringing those disciples together into communities of believers, and in developing and releasing those believers to create other communities... till Jesus the King comes again!

What do I have to learn from ‘older’ people?

In a word, what those who are ‘older’ in their journey have to offer is: experience.

I know there are many other things that one can learn from those who are ‘older’ in the faith than we are.  However, ‘older’ people just have more experience than you or I in life and ministry.  Those experiences can be ones filled with joy and fruit as well as those which were more difficult and served as defining moments for that person and his/her journey. mentors

Pulling on someone’s experience does not mean that we will do exactly what they did or that we will make the same choices as they did.  Pulling on someone’s experiences means that we will ‘mine’ their experiences for guiding principles to help us when we have to face those decisions currently in front of us or in the future.

For the past number of years, I have always sought to have a mentor who is just a few years older than myself.  What these mentors offer me is life perspective that helps me as I navigate this phase of my life and ministry. They have never told me what to do.  They have listened and offered their experience (and wisdom) as a help to my decisions and process.

What I have found interesting in recent times is that ‘younger’ people seemingly seek this kind of mentoring relationship with someone ‘older’; while ‘older’ people tend to not allocate significant portions of their time and energy to this kind of facilitation and training of those who may be younger than them.  Interesting in light of these words:

Likewise, urge the younger men (and women) to be self-controlled.  Show yourself (older man or woman) in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity, and sound speech.”  (Titus 2:7-8)

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